On behalf of the Ministry of Planning and National Development I am pleased to present the final results of the Population and Housing Census 2006 of the Maldives.

Census provides information on the population growth, spatial distribution, age-sex composition, educational levels, employment and unemployment situation, migratory patterns, nuptiality, fertility and other such characteristics of the country's population. It also gives information on household characteristics. This information is critical for population and development planning and for monitoring the achievements of the development goals such as the National Development Plan Goals and the Millennium Development Goals (MDG).

Data from various censuses serve as a comparable basis reflecting the achievements of past policies carried out by the government for the benefit of the people. At a time when the citizens are eager for new reforms in the country, the results of the census will provide essential data for decision makers, policy planners and the business community in appreciating the tremendous progress of the last few decades and in planning the future spectrum of development. The census results also serve as vital information at a crucial point in the reconstruction and development of the country after the tsunami.

This report has been made possible by the dedicated support of everyone involved in the organization and conducting of the census, from government staff in various ministries and offices to volunteers from public and private sector organizations, and we sincerely thank them all. Special mention with appreciation is also made of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for their technical assistance. Finally I would like to take this opportunity to thank with recognition and gratitude the management and staff of the Ministry of Planning and National Development for their excellent effort, support and commitment in making the Census 2006 a success.

Hon. Hamdun Hameed
Minister of Planning and National Development